CHINO HILLS, CA – The BAPS temple began hosting the Women’s Conference in 2007 in an effort to provide a forum for women to connect, share, and celebrate the vital roles they play. This year BAPS hosted its ninth annual Women’s Conference at 11 centers across North America,
On March 14, over 500 women gathered at the temple in Chino Hills. ‘Moving Forward’ covered three key concepts: compassion, forgiveness, and perseverance. The conference commenced with a Hindu prayer sung by Swara Modi, followed by a dance performed by Lakshmi Thirumani.
Keynote speaker Ms. Aparna Hande, honored by the 56th Assembly District “Woman of the Year” in 2012 by Assembly member Tony Mendoza, praised the BAPS community of women, saying, “These women are dedicated to empowering themselves and others. They are driven by compassion and forgiveness to work together towards common solutions.”
The conference continued with a session on forgiveness. “Forgiveness is like a muscle – the more we practice it, the stronger it becomes,” said Swati Desai, attorney and certified family law specialist. She led the audience through an interactive discussion on practicing the art of forgiveness and left attendees with a challenge to move forward from negative situations and circumstances. In this awe-inspiring presentation, the audience was encouraged to put themselves in the shoes of another and learn to let go, as forgiveness leads to healing and happiness. Hetal Patel, a Doctor of Chiropractic candidate eloquently spoke of compassion, one of the strongest attributes she holds as a leader. Patel said,”Many of us think compassion drains us, but in fact it enlivens us.
For this, women are strong. We are strong. We have the opportunity for generations to come to teach ourselves and our daughters how to unleash the power of compassion.”
Pratiksha Amin, dental student motivated the audience by encouraging introspection. She created an environment of camaraderie amongst the women in the audience to realize that the power of perseverance was within them all, they just need the right strategies and motivation to continue moving forward in life.Among the guests in attendance were Manisha Sulakhe, and dancer Depti Patel, IT professional; Alka Patel businesswoman, and Anu Jain of SAHARA. After the conference, speakers were available for one-on-one mentoring to help attendees with their own professional and personal growth. All left the conference with a profound feeling of unity in womanhood, knowing that change and growth are possible with the help of positivity, forgiveness, and introspection.